|Students Aim To Legalize Medical Marijuana|
Posted by CN Staff on November 24, 2003 at 22:40:08 PT|
By Branden C Peterson
Source: Minnesota Daily
More than a dozen University students are collecting signatures in hopes of putting the issue of medical marijuana before Minneapolis voters. The group must gather 7,774 signatures from eligible Minneapolis voters by August to get a referendum on the November 2004 ballots, said Aaron Marcus, a third-year law student and drive leader.
With enough signatures, the group will push to add a question asking voters if the City Council should be allowed to distribute, license and oversee a medicinal marijuana program to approved patients in the city.
The group kicked off the campaign Thursday and Friday by collecting more than 200 signatures in Coffman Union and the Law School. Organizers plan several more signature-gathering events.
Marcus called last week’s collection a great start to a campaign that will target many areas around campus and in Minneapolis.
“Just by being out here we’ve really improved our visibility already,” Marcus said.
The group’s members come from organizations such as Students for Sensible Drug Policy and the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
Going for the signatures was not the first choice for organizers who wanted to change the state law.
The group first looked to the Legislature, but since 1995, several medical marijuana bills have failed there, Marcus said. Then the group began to consider developing an ordinance change in the Minneapolis city charter.
Marcus spoke with nine City Council members but received little support. Marcus also discussed the issue with Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak but left the meeting without any support on the issue, he said.
The group’s next route was to hit the sidewalks and talk with citizens to see whether the issue was something they would support.
With enough signatures, the group must submit its work 12 weeks before the election to the Minneapolis Charter Commission for preparation.
If more than 50 percent of Minneapolis voters decide in favor of the question, the city charter will change, making medical marijuana legal in the city.
If the group has enough supporters, medical marijuana use will still be several steps from legal.
First, the City Council will determine if the question to legalize medicinal marijuana should be placed on the ballot, law professor Fred Morrison said.
And with medical marijuana use illegal in Minnesota, state lawmakers would also have to pass legislation allowing medical marijuana use by prescribed patients. Without a state law amendment, the new Minneapolis law on medical marijuana could not be legally implemented.
Ten states have passed laws allowing marijuana use for medical purposes such as alleviating pain because of medical conditions including cancer, AIDS and multiple sclerosis.
If Minneapolis voters pass the possible city charter amendment, Marcus said, it would send a message to state lawmakers about citizens’ stance on the issue.
State Rep. Alice Hausman, DFL-St. Paul, has sponsored multiple bills at the State Capitol to legalize medical marijuana use. Of the bills, Hausman said, one has been discussed in committee hearings.
Hausman said watching those bills die year after year makes her feel it will likely take a strong citizen-led movement — such as the signature-gathering campaign — to get lawmakers’ attention.
“There has to be more pressure from the public to be able to debate issues like this,” she said. “In so many ways, our policies around the issues of drug use and drug abuse are flawed. I think this is just one of those issues.”
The group plans to extend its signature-gathering campaign in January to University residence halls and throughout Minneapolis next year.
Related Article & Web Sites:
U.S. War on Drugs Sparks Dialogue
CannabisNews -- NORML Archives
|Comment #6 posted by jose melendez on November 26, 2003 at 07:50:12 PT|
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|Comment #5 posted by jose melendez on November 26, 2003 at 06:07:58 PT|
|Re: HIA vs. DEA|
(Of course, there is) " . . . no authority for the proposition that widespread use of a controlled substance constitutes a high potential for abuse . . ."
[ Post Comment ]
Comment #4 posted by Richard Paul Zuckerm on November 26, 2003 at 05:54:09 PT:|
|Cannabis Enthusiast states in Comment number 3, ante, that pot is already decriminalized in The State of Minnesota. I respectfully disagree with that comment. A brief visit to the NORML Web site supplied by Cannabis Enthusiast indicates it is a misdemeanor, graduating to a felony for a larger amount. The former governor had the right idea about outright legalization!!|
I wonder when the 9th Circuit will render their decision in the Hemp Industries Association v. DEA, on the proposed "final rule" which would ban all hemp products from the shelves of all health food stores throughout this country? I wonder about the other 9th Circuit case pending from a medical marijuana patient? I hope the U.S. Supreme Court grants certiorari in Silveira v. Lockyer, a case from the 9th Circuit, to spell it out in Black and White, whether the individual citizen was intended to be within the purview of the Second Amendment Right to keep and bear arms, our right to self-defense. www.jpfo.org; www.gunowners.org, to lay to rest the ongoing fued between the National Rifle Association [and other freedom loving organizations] and the Handgun Control Institute [whose members consist of former government intelligence officers and other federal law enforcement, whose goal is to take away every firearm from every American, people who appear to have read too many New York Post articles written by Ralph Peters!!!!]? I wonder what the status is of the petition for certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court on jury nullification by an attorney at law named Rex Curry, whose web site is Rexcurry.net?
Richard Paul Zuckerman, Box 159, Metuchen, New Jersey, 08840-0159, (Cell telephone number)(908) 403-6990, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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|Comment #3 posted by Cannabis Enthusiast on November 25, 2003 at 17:02:24 PT|
|If you have an ounce on you and a cop catches you with that, you get a $200 ticket (maximum punishment). Minnesota is already a fairly liberal state. Hell, the old governor wanted to legalize marijuana completely..
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Comment #2 posted by Richard Paul Zuckerm on November 25, 2003 at 12:01:16 PT:|
|Please wake up, people of Minnesota? |
Your own Attorney General Hatch issued his report on September 30, 2003, about the pharmaceutical industry as the cause of our sky high health care costs! Please visit his Web site, download his report, and read it for yourselves? Consider the NAZI history of the pharmaceutical companies, especially the breakup of IG Farben into Bayer and Aventis!!!?? An article in the July 2000 Journal of the American Medical Association concludes that properly administered pharmaceutical drugs are the third leading cause of death in the world!!!!
Can't the American people see that the drug companies do not want natural substances to be used to prevent and treat medical maladies, because it cuts into their drug company profits!! This includes the herbs to treat manic depression, www.truehope.com; the root from Africa known as Ibogaine, which has a high success rate to treat drug addiction, www.cures-not-wars.org [download the December 25, 2002, Journal of the American Association article about Ibogain from this Website][Instead, the medical establishment prefers "drug treatment" centers which provide Methadone, a totally synthetic drug CREATED BY THE NAZIS]; and medical cannabis.
Tell the people of Minneapolis about what I just wrote, please?
Richard Paul Zuckerman, Box 159, Metuchen, New Jersey, 08840-0159, (Cell telephone)(908) 403-6990, email@example.com.
[ Post Comment ]
Comment #1 posted by Marc Paquette on November 25, 2003 at 07:08:27 PT:|
|Hi my Friends;|
Health Canada approved in the past alot of pharmaceutical medications more or less good, and even some with addiction problems and horrible side-effects that can dammage your liver, stomach, heart, and other internal organs. Many of those medications are potentialy lethal to use with alcohol and other interaction problems.
In 1996, Health Canada started studying the benifits and values of medical marijuana based on decades of research done in US mostly.
In June 1999, Health Canada APPROVED the use of medicinal marijuana..and this was before the Parker win in 2000. At first instance, Health Canada was never forced by Canadian courts to start a medical marijuana program. So, the question is; "Do you beleive that IF after 3 years of studies by Health Canada, that IF they would have determined that it's use would have no benificial medicinal values..that they would have APPROVED it and start a medicinal marijuana program?"
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